felons voting rights

Topics: Prison, Punishment, Criminal law Pages: 1 (400 words) Published: March 3, 2014
serious crime usually punishable by imprisonment or death. In other words a felony is a big deal. Felons have been convicted of a crime including, or in the same category as murder, rape, arson, and burglary. It is because of this that many believe that felons do not deserve the right to vote. Those against felons voting believe that those convicted of crime have shown bad-judgment, which proves them unfit to make good decisions, especially choosing the nation's leaders (“ProCon.org”). There are also those however, that believe that felons have paid enough of a price by serving their assigned sentence. One of the major questions in this controversy is: what exactly are the rights of ex-felons? Many of the supporters of a felon’s right to vote believe that it is unfair to seemingly punish them twice for the same act. They believe that a felon’s debt to society is their time behind bars; they don’t believe that a felon should lose their vote and spend time behind bars. “Felons who are out of prison have largely served the punishment prescribed by the judicial system. Shouldn't that be enough?”(Mauer). They believe that incarceration and losing their right to vote, would be too many punishments for one crime. Edward Feser, however, has a point against this. “Few people would say that the drunk driver sentenced to lose his license and pay a hefty fine is punished twice. Most would agree that given the crime the two components are perfectly apt.”(Feser). Just because they have paid enough of their debt to be allowed out of prison, does not mean there are not continuing consequences (Clegg). Other arguments of the advocates to the voting rights of felons include the data from a study suggesting that former offenders who vote are less likely to return to jail. Others believe that without the right to vote, “… may actually contribute to recidivism by keeping ex-offenders and their families disengaged from the civic mainstream.” (Feser). This seems like a good point but...
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